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The Problem of Mental Deficiency 9780198206927

The Problem of Mental Deficiency

Eugenics, Democracy, and Social Policy in Britain, C. 1870-1959

ISBN-10: 0198206925
ISBN-13: 9780198206927
AUTHOR:
PUBLISHER: Oxford University Press, Incorporated
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Note: Not guaranteed to come with supplemental materials (access codes, CDs, DVDs)
Product Description: This is the first detailed assessment of the development and implementation of social policy to deal with the problem of the `mentally deficient' in Britain between 1870 and 1959. Mathew Thomson analyses all the factors involved in the policy-making process, beginning with the politics of thelegislature and showing how the demands of central government were interpreted by local authorities, resulting in a wide and varied distribution of medical, institutional, and community care in different parts of the country. The efforts of health professionals, voluntary organizations and thefamilies themselves are considered, alongside questions about the influence of changing concepts of class, gender, and citizenship. The author queries the belief that the policy of segregation was largely unsuccessful, and reveals a hitherto unrecognized system of care in the community. He reframesour understanding of the campaign for sterilization and examines why British policy-makers avoided extremist measures such as the compulsory sterilization introduced in Germany and parts of the US during this period. Thomson shows that the problem of mental deficiency cannot be understood simply interms of eugenics but must also be considered as part of the process of adjusting to democracy in the twentieth century.

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PUBLICATION DATE:
PAGES: 368
CATEGORY: Political Science, Psychology, Science, Social Science
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